Since the release of our initial Arkansas coaching hot board Sept. 16, we’ve gathered information that requires some adjustments.
Charlie Strong (center) was on our initial coaching hot board.
We’ll continue tweaking our hot board throughout the search as more info becomes available.
Read on to find out who has been added and who has been taken off.
Gary Patterson, head coach, TCU – This defensive-minded coach has posted an outstanding record of 112–30 since being named head coach prior to Horned Frogs' December 2000 bowl game. His name is mentioned often in coaching searches, and Arkansas’ is no exception. There’s been recent buzz about the 52-year-old Patterson, who has obvious recruiting ties in Texas. Could this be the year he finally bolts for greener pastures? The 3-0 Horned Frogs are ranked 15th nationally heading into Saturday’s game at SMU.
Willie Taggart, head coach, Western Kentucky – We had an eye on Taggart, 36, before the season began, and he’s only gotten hotter in September. The Hilltoppers are 3-1, including a win at Kentucky and Saturday’s 42-17 thumping of Southern Miss. This week, they head to Jonesboro to take on Gus Malzahn’s Arkansas State Red Wolves. For more on Taggart, check out last week’s story about potential dark horse candidates.
Skip Holtz, head coach, South Florida – We started hearing Holtz’s name almost as soon as the search began in April. We were skeptical, but the origin of the talk was enough to get our attention and put him on the hot board. Back-to-back September setbacks, including last week’s 31-27 loss to Ball State, make it highly unlikely that the Hogs would bring in a coach who also went 5-7 in 2011.
Charlie Strong, head coach, Louisville – Based on his track record and the fact that he’s a native Arkansan, Strong seems like a no-brainer when thinking of potential hires for the Razorbacks. However, at this time, he does not appear to be a candidate to become the Hogs’ next coach. Strong is a hot name, and he’ll probably continue to be when the coaching carousel gets cranked back up. But keep in mind that he’ll return the bulk of his Louisville team in 2013. Coaching searches are fluid, meaning things can always change. If they do, we’ll be the first to let you know.